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Health & Safety Information for Parents

Tips for Parents

Health and Safety


Parents Feedback

Insurance information
Health and emergency medical insurance is required for all Lotus participants. Check your regular policy to see what coverage it provides for medical services abroad. Be sure you have coverage for medical evacuation, in case your child needs to be flown back to the U.S. for medical treatment. Please send Lotus proof of your insurance coverage: either a letter from your provider or a copy of your insurance card.

If you do not have overseas insurance coverage, please purchase it before starting our program. If you are a BLCU student you may purchase the required insurance after arriving in Beijing, which costs only US$80 for an academic year.

Pre-departure preparation
Before students come to China it is advised that they pay a visit to their physician, dentist, etc. to ensure good health. Check the Center for Disease Control and Protection's website for up-to-date information about immunization requirements and recommendations for travel in China:

If you have any special health needs or conditions, check whether the proper medications and medical supplies are available in China. If not, make sure you carry a sufficient supply with you. Be sure to bring copies of all medical records and prescriptions, including for eyeglasses. If you think you will need regular medical care abroad, bring a letter from your home doctor which includes details of your medical treatment.

Note: A completed and signed physical exam is required for students attending academic year programs at BLCU and other universities.

Important health resources
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (800.311.3435)
U.S. State Department Overseas Citizens Emergency Center (202.647.5225)
Mobility International (503.343.1284) if you have a disability

Homestay safety
Each family that Lotus partners with is interviewed personally by our staff and must undergo a thorough security check before they are accepted. The housing units are usually owned (not rented) by the host families and most hosts are working professionals. Furthermore, many of our families live in apartment communities with 24-hour security.

General safety in China
China continues to be one of the safest places to travel in Asia. Most of the country's major cities such as Beijing have very low rates of violent crime. The most common type of crime experienced by travelers is petty economic crime such as pick-pocketing. We advise our students to pay close attention to their wallets and valuable belongings, especially when they are in-transit on buses, trains or subways.

High School program safety
We at Lotus recognize that high school students need more supervision than our older participants, and we therefore have measures in place to ensure their safety abroad (and their parents' peace of mind). Our Beijing staff is on-call 24/7 to assist participants in any and all problems that might arise during their stay in China. All of Lotus' program activities and excursions are organized and run by staff members, and take place during the day in safe locations. Unless otherwise permitted by their parents, high school program participants must return home each weekday evening for dinner with their host family. During weekends and special occasions, students may ask their host family permission to have dinner elsewhere.

All high school participants are required to notify their host family about their destination and approximate return time if going out with friends in the evening. We highly recommended that parents notify the Lotus staff about the weekday and weekend evening curfews their child has in place at home. Our staff can then make sure that the student's host family in Beijing enforces this curfew.

Parents should take note that in China there are no age restrictions for drinking alcohol. We encourage parents to discuss their rules regarding alcohol consumption with their child before attending our program. Although our host families are not allowed to offer alcohol to high school participants, we have found that some students without clear rules in place take advantage of their freedom to experience Beijing's nightlife 鈥?this may involve drinking which would be illegal at home.

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